For those who aren't aware, The Wilbanks Consulting Group is based in Houston, TX. This week, our great city experienced an unprecedented natural disaster with Tropical Storm Harvey. I am sincerely lucky to report that my family and our home are okay. Many of you have worked with our consultant, Adrianne. Adrianne's family was forced to evacuate their home, and it is unclear when they will be allowed to return to assess any damage. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers. All other Houston-based consultants are safe and dry.
We have been inundated with e-mails, texts, social media messages, and calls from clients and colleagues checking on our welfare. We cannot begin to thank you enough for your concern and support. Many of you have asked how you can help our community. THANK YOU. Below is a list of nine local charities in (mostly) alphabetical order that I trust will responsibly use the funds they receive to aide those impacted by Harvey.
I will eventually do a gift card drive or two in an effort to support local working professionals and families with basic needs. So, consider giving something now, and something later, as needs evolve.
Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund through the Greater Houston Community Foundation: Mayor Sylvester Turner established this fund to provide tax-deductible flood relief donations for those affected by the historic flooding. https://ghcf.org/hurricane-relief/
BakerRipley (formerly Neighborhood Centers): This local non-profit has been helping low-income Houstonians for 110 years, since its founding in 1907. Baker Ripley is taking donations for long-term disaster relief, and is currently operating the shelter at NRG Park.
Houston Food Bank: America's largest food bank is prepared to mobilize resources across Houston, asking for volunteers, donations, and monetary contributions. Every $1 donated provides 3 meals. http://www.houstonfoodbank.org/get-involved/harvey-disaster-relief/
Interfaith Ministries: Working across faith communities, IMGH resettles refugees and provides extensive Meals on Wheels services for homebound seniors and their pets. https://www.imgh.org/donate-now/
The JJ Watt Foundation: Possibly the most recognizable individual in Houston, NFL Texans player JJ Watt's foundation typically provides after-school opportunities for middle-school aged children in the community to become involved in athletics, so that they may learn the character traits of accountability, teamwork, leadership, work ethic, and perseverance, while in a safe and supervised environment with their peers. His current fundraising efforts will directly support the victims of Harvey. https://www.youcaring.com/victimsofhurricaneharvey-915053
LGBTQ Harvey Relief Fund through The Montrose Center: This fund builds on strong community ties "to help homeless youth, seniors, people living with HIV, hate crime survivors, and those devastated by the storm" regardless of sexuality. https://my.reason2race.com/DNicol/HurricaneHarveyLGBTQDisasterReliefFund2017
Rescued Pets Movement: This organization provides a second chance for thousands of homeless dogs and cats through rehabilitation and transport to forever homes in communities throughout the country and Canada that have a demand for adoptable pets. https://www.rescuedpetsmovement.org/
Wildlife Center of Texas: Not all animals are pets, and displaced wildlife need help too. Houston-based Wildlife Center of Texas receives no local, state, or federal funding to nurse displaced wildlife hurt or orphaned by the storm.
The YMCA of Greater Houston Harvey Relief Efforts: Your support will help the YMCA provide the families and individuals who come to YMCA with their basic needs in this time of crisis. https://www.ymcahouston.org/blog/support-harvey-relief-efforts
Thank you again for your support and concern. Please continue to keep the people of Houston in your thoughts and prayers.
Special thanks to Morgan Kinney of Houstonia Magazine for some of these organization descriptions.